Citizen Without A Country   (2017Mar31)


Friday, March 31, 2017                                            9:50 AM

The repeal of North Carolina’s HB2 is no repeal—it simply removes the rally-point word ‘transgender’ from the new bill—which still allows discrimination and eternal foot-dragging by the State. In spite of pressure from colleges and businesses, nationally, who oppose North Carolina’s puritanical homophobia—at the risk of their own bottom-lines—North Carolina has reworded their bias into a bill that repeals only the use of the word ‘transgender’, not their control over who ‘goes’ where.

This is similar to Trump’s 2nd (and still blocked) Muslim ban, which changed only in that it removed the word ‘Muslim’ from the ban. The hate-fueled neo-cons of recent ascendance care nothing for the disapproval of the courts or the business establishments, much less the people they affront. Even when they get a rolled-up newspaper across the snout, they still try to hang-dog their way around them to resume eating their own feces.

And ‘bad dogs’ are an apt comparison, as they prove incapable of sensing their own immorality, turning puppy eyes on the nation, as if to say, “Why would you deny me this?” When Trump tweeted that he’d been ‘tapped’, he was trying to claim that having his peoples’ side of conversations with foreign-spies-under-surveillance should have been redacted. Even for Trump, that’s some childish hypocrisy, on the level of ‘wasn’t me—the cat broke the cookie jar’.


Meanwhile, he continues to kick down the sand-castle of Obama’s legacy—undoing both environmental and civil protections whose only crimes are that they annoy some entitled industrialists—and bigots who still resent having had a black president. The totality of the evil in Trump and the Republicans is overpowering—they haven’t a single decent motivation amongst them. We are literally being governed by our enemy—while they ‘investigate’ their own ties to the enemy.

I hope all you Trump supporters out there are comfortable with the term ‘traitor’—because that’s what you are, that’s what he is, that’s what making a “law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof” is. I won’t even be able to think of this place as the United States of America any longer, until and unless we get him out of there, and elect a Democrat majority to Congress in 2018. Until then, we live in the Trump-Reich.


Be More Careful Next Time   (2017Mar28)


Tuesday, March 28, 2017                                        12:21 PM

I think Fascism may have been a temper tantrum that Western Civilization threw after their God died. They thought, “Well, we can’t worship the unseen anymore—let’s worship ourselves—or our leaders.” Capitalism, too, seems to have become a tawdry equivalent—“Money is life, so worship money above all else.” But the Earth has always provided us with much more than we give ourselves, or can buy with money—if worshipping Gaea wasn’t such an old, primitive meme, it’d get more play in the West. Instead, many choose Trump—a crossbreed of Fascism and Capitalism.

Still, we don’t need to worship the Earth—taking care of it would be sufficient—not poisoning it or chopping it down would do the trick. Ironically, that which connects us inexorably to the planet is the thing that makes us destroy it—we are animals. Born in blood and feces, breastfed, raised on roasted flesh, making waste, making babies, striving, fighting, and dying—take away the clothes and the gadgets, we’re just a bunch of animals. And when we’re asked to control ourselves, we claim ‘freedom’ and do whatever we want, instead.

It’s true—nothing makes me want to start a fight more than someone else saying, ‘control yourself’. Language becomes a cage, and when it starts to close in, we shout our way out. That’s what all that shouting on TV news is about—animals trying to break out of the cage of facts, rationalizing their predations as if their lives depended on it. You’ll notice that everyone stays calm until their reality is attacked—that’s when the confrontation comes, when they’re challenged. It no longer fascinates, or even frustrates, me—it just makes me sick and tired.

Trump and his gang make a big deal of manners—manners make it okay to condemn a statement without denying anything in the statement. That they are the rudest bunch of thugs seems to escape their notice, interstitially. They talk down to the whole country—but still puff themselves up and stand on ceremony whenever anyone else approaches frankness. I’d never thought of hypocrisy as a lifestyle choice before this administration came in. It’s endlessly embarrassing to see the depths of ignorance and self-service to which Trump, his gang of traitors, and the Republicans as a group, are willing to stoop.

It’s almost funny—if they weren’t so desperately self-involved, they could see for themselves how utterly transparent their cynical mendacity is to the rest of us. If there was ever a perfect example of the adage ‘be careful what you wish for’, Trump is it. That crowd of fools, who so ferociously rejected the female candidate, were just enough to get Trump through the Electoral College—and now that he’s in office, it seems that the delusional chaos of his campaign speeches is being transcribed to paper, as if he spoke with judgement instead of mere authority.

I can guarantee that a referendum, tomorrow, on President Trump would remove him from office—but we are so used to getting a usable President that we have no machinery to dispose of a broken one that snuck in by accident. Any other elected office would be vulnerable to a referendum, but when you’re the President, you’re the one who calls for it—I hope we’ve all learned a lesson here. Be more careful when you vote for a president, from now on. They ‘investigate’ themselves, once sworn in—when we should have done so, prior to the election.


But that stuff isn’t news at all—the sudden, precipitous rise in the level of lies and stupidity is a shock—but it’s really just the old way, with a super-charger on the Evil. Government has never been totally innocent or idealistic—but it’s insistence on the pretense of civility has worn so thin it’s transparent, or gone completely, really, when you see the Administration’s latest antics and mouthings. The treacly bonhomie that Sean Spicer was giving off today was more nauseating than his rudeness-fit faux-pas from yesterday—that clown is no actor—and I have no more stomach for smiling hypocrisy than for angry cynicism.

We have a representative government—but because of the Electoral College, our current administration represents the most resentful and ill-educated third of the voters—and the voters themselves were only half the number of eligible voters. At this point, we should make voting a legal requirement, like jury duty—sure, we’d be forcing the more irresponsible people to participate, but being irresponsible is better than being foolish enough to vote for that profiteering Russian puppet, Trump.


The Infamous Lying President   (2017Mar27)

Monday, March 27, 2017                                        10:26 AM

Another week, another bunch of stuff will happen—I’m gonna try not to get too upset about any of it. Used to be, if I didn’t follow current events, I felt I was being careless—now, the news isn’t so much ‘events’, as machinations.

Back in the Seventies, if a candidate was suspected of colluding with Russia, we wouldn’t still be discussing it on the news, three months into their elected term—we’d find out—and PDQ. And just what level of stupidity is Trump assigning us when he tries to characterize the incidental collection of info from his team, during surveillance of Russian spies—as him being under surveillance? Opposite day is over, Donny—turning the truth inside out only works during a campaign—not while serving in office.

Meanwhile, Trump is the hand we’re watching—while the other hand, the GOP Congress, pushes through crap legislation for their donors—dumping coal waste in local streams and hunting bears in hibernation. Who are these evil monsters and who the hell is dumb enough to elect them?

Public education, which made this country the greatest nation on Earth—and by example led every other country to higher literacy and science research—has become a libtard scam? Seems pretty clear to me what the real scam is—profiteer politicians who don’t care about our civic health.

And what’s this new BS about ‘accesses’? Access to health care, or access to education—is code for ‘you can buy it, if you have the money’. Nobody is fooled by this cynical word-play. Yet these duplicitous ‘conservatives’ still get equal time on the news to spread their completely transparent BS and misdirection. Even MSNBC, a supposedly leftist news channel, gives these hypocrites an unconscionable freedom to deliver their used-car-sales spiel all day, every day.

It is long past time for the news to stop representing evil as the ‘other side’ of an issue—truth will out—but if you run a cable news service, it will ‘out’ only between equal parts of lies. Those spin-doctors are slick—I’ll give’em that—but once their BS is deconstructed, it’s still blatant BS. Trump has really ridden that horse hard—that’s why he’s famous as the lying president.

Still, I can’t figure out why exactly it’s taking so long to settle this question of our president being a traitor. Is it because the case is really that complicated—or are we just too embarrassed to admit how badly we’ve been bamboozled?

Latest Offerings   (2017Mar25)

Saturday, March 25, 2017                                        2:26 PM

Cover: “Can’t Smile Without You”

This weekend started with a bang—but it sucks that we have to get our jollies from seeing our criminal president and his cynical Congress get their asses kicked. If only we could acquire the knack of electing statespersons instead of lickspittles. Well, there’s supposedly a surge of young women getting into politics as both activists and candidates, so maybe our choices will improve in future—let’s hope so. Not that men can’t produce the occasional Al Franken or Tim Kaine, but such men are rare as hen’s teeth on the beltway, or in state legislatures. Women can hardly hurt things.

Improv – Spring Dance


But enough about worldly matters. Oh, one last thing—the ‘Spring Dance’ video I posted today includes pictures of the grandbaby at her first Women’s March in San Jose—such a cute little protestor! There are also shots of the princess (and family) at her first California vineyard wine-tasting and a St. Paddy’s celebration. Even more exciting are the videos of her first attempts at crawling—that kid’ll be mobile any day now—poor parents.

Cover: “Who Needs to Dream”


These videos have taken me two weeks to get posted—I’m slowing down some, lately. But even without the cheat-factor of using cute baby pictures in the video, I think the music is okay—as always, it’s the best I can manage. I yam wot I yam, as Popeye would say.

Improv – Retro-Chrome


I’ve recorded the Barry Manilow covers before, but I enjoy them so I did them over again. Barry is the king of schmaltz—and I’m a big fan, even if my playing (and singing) doesn’t show it.

Improv – Hymnal


I guess I’ll have to get busy at the piano—these six new videos represent only a part of the pile of pix and video that’s been coming from Jessy lately—and I can’t show you all the baby cuteness until I have music to go with it. Still, I think what I’ve posted today should keep up anyone’s cuteness quota for awhile.

Improv – Haunted House Blues


Okay, I’m done—please enjoy these latest offerings.



Information Analysis   (2017Mar23)


Thursday, March 23, 2017                                                7:16 PM

There’s a new industry—information analysis for public consumption—you can see it in the deer-in-the-headlights look of recent guests of shows like The Rachel Maddow Show, The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, and Real Time with Bill Maher—people whose life up until now consisted of research, data analysis and synthesis, in quiet, dusty offices, are suddenly guests on a TV talk show.

Sometimes they’ve written a book, but just as often they’ve had an article published in a newspaper—either way, they’ve spent months, perhaps years, doing research on some overlooked, obscure, but important piece of our civic life. News today has a cornucopia of subjects, many of them medical, scientific, financial, legal, or something equally complex—and that complexity increases by an order of magnitude when we get down to cases—specific aspects of Antarctic microbiology effected by climate change, perhaps, or the difficulties of fighting the spread of Zika when each municipality has its own mosquito-spraying schedule.

And it’s more than an understanding of principles, either on laymen’s terms or as a professional expert—there’s an overabundance of data to deal with as well. Congressional bills run to the thousands of pages of legislation. Unmanned drones send back data from Pluto that will keep astronomers busy analyzing it for years to come. Wikileaks dumps thousands of pages of raw, hacked text and data—friend or foe, that stuff doesn’t index and summarize itself. Then there’s the galaxy of social-media texts, pix, likes, emojis, and what-all that can target-market, sociologically analyze, or just plain stalk almost anyone under the age of thirty.

There’s a lot of information floating around. If there weren’t, perhaps we’d have less trouble with the creeps that insert disinformation into the social conversation—misrepresenting a person or group for purely partisan aims. But it would seem that someone has to go looking for that stuff—I mean, the fact that it’s out there also speaks to the fact that a lot of people want their prejudices confirmed by an authoritarian media voice, no matter how shaky their journalistic cred. Their audience pre-dates them—they’re meeting a ‘need’, so to speak.

And the Alt-righters are not alone in seeking comfort. Americans are glued to their I-phones as much to hide from this frightening new world of information, as to make use of it. We can obsessively play video games or surf Instagram all day, take selfies or duck-pose ‘til our eyes bug out—that avalanche of information is still there—even if you don’t look.

The rich people started it—denying that smoking was dangerous so they could keep selling tobacco, denying that drunk-driving was a problem so they could keep selling liquor, and still denying that climate change is a threat when scientists are screaming in their faces. And if they can deny reality, why can’t we? Hey, new cars are expensive as hell—better to say ‘fukkit’ and keep the old gas-guzzler.

There’s much more information being denied than just climate change—the economics of socialized medicine (detached from the vested interests of existing insurers and drug manufacturers), the economics of socialized higher education (including the future cost of an tech-illiterate citizenry)—just name anything where an industry is making a good buck and you’ll find the conversation being steered away from anything that amounts to significant change. This is especially true of finance. And while the unseen machinations of lobbyists are certainly a big threat, the lack of free thought and public conversation about these areas is just as much a roadblock to change.

Some unpleasant folks like to say I’m ‘drinking the Kool Aid’. When Rush Limbaugh tells them that the New York Times is lying to America, but Paul Ryan is as honest as the day is long—then they tell me I’m the one that’s brainwashed—I really can’t respond. I might as well be trying to explain things to a cow. But, again, it comforts them to believe that they are right in their prejudices. It’s almost frustrating enough for me to want the consequences to hurry up and show themselves—if my words are useless, maybe reality can convince them. But that’s a pyrrhic victory of the worst kind—I get to say ‘I told you so’ while we all die—not much of a win there.

Here’s the problem—the world has gotten complicated—and crowded—don’t forget, overpopulation is still a global issue, even with first-world birthrates in decline—and we, instead of embracing that unpleasant consequence, are creating a world of doubt and rumor, where the nasty facts can’t reach us. But that is like avoiding the doctor when you don’t feel well—it’s a bad idea. While we’re putting off facing the problem, it’s just metastasizing.

I wish we could put all these fake-news-zombies to one side, and get everyone else to huddle up, and say, ‘look, we know this is real—fuck those people—let’s do something before we all die’. Wouldn’t that be nice? Politics today seems to be the art of avoiding just such a come-to-Jesus moment. And it’ll work fine—until Jesus comes to see us.

I think we need to take a hard look at the paradox of the Internet—its vulnerability to hacking makes it unreliable—so why are we in such a hurry to rely on it? As it stands, the Internet just adds another layer of confusion on top of an already confusing situation.

But the main problem remains the intersection of the power of government and the power of money—their relationship should be, to some degree, adversarial—the age of assuming that what’s good for business is good for the country is long past—and we need to face that, too.


My Work Is Done   (2017Mar23)

Thursday, March 23, 2017                                                10:54 AM

I haven’t been blogging much lately—my health prevents me from exerting myself and it has been worse lately. My blogging, and the obsessing over politics that spurs it on, have really taken their toll—railing against the current tidal wave of lies and corruption for the last several years is a job for a young firebrand, not a beaten-down, disabled shut-in. The stress of watching America fall victim to its worst ‘side’ is exhausting.

Besides, I feel America catching up with me—why should I blog when I’ll simply be echoing the Wall Street Journal’s latest op-ed? With the majority of America up in arms over the reality of ‘Prez Trump’, my work is done. In fact, my obsessing over how we screwed the voting pooch is actually a step backward—and I lack the energy to keep up with the torrent of fresh lies and counter-lies from the alt-right, over TrumpCare, Russian-colluding treason, hiring his kids, and disavowing every non-shooting government program.

If only the alt-right could disseminate logic with the excellence they display in spreading ‘talking points’—imagine. The 37%’s latest jab is to tell me to keep ‘drinking the Kool Aid’. I can’t imagine what sources they use to determine that observed reality is the product of deluded followers of some hippy agenda. Neither can I fathom how these yahoos miss the fact that they support the wealthy 1%, when at least 36% of them can’t be a part of them—and will be just as poorly served by government cuts as we ‘kool-aid drinkers’.

Here are some thoughts from the past week that I hadn’t the strength to post before today:

Wednesday, March 22, 2017                                            5:00 AM

Politics? What the hell am I doing worrying about politics? Could I be less socially active? I don’t think so. Could I be further from involvement in current events? Not and keep breathing, no.

And all this time I’ve got piano music and videos of my granddaughter learning to crawl, as alternatives. Why I would waste a moment’s time on filthy politics is totally beyond me. I guess I’m just mad because it used to be safe to ignore politics—ethical failings on both sides and reluctance to change used to guarantee that elections wouldn’t mean much.

But the combination of lobbyist seepage and Russian bot-attacks have hacked our democracy—and now we have a huge disconnect between what the majority of Americans support and what the politicians claim needs to be done. And now, to quote John Oliver, the list of program-cuts scrolls up the screen “like the end-credits to America”.

What part of “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof” is hard to understand? A Muslim Ban is as un-American as rotten-apple pie—it is the antithesis of the freedom we pretend to stand for. And it offers as much national security as a wall between us and Mexico.

The GOP want to cut social programs out of ‘concern for the taxpayers’—but they don’t intend to lower taxes—instead, that money will be transferred to military spending—as if America doesn’t spend enough on our military already. And a president that compulsively lies doesn’t help a bit. Paying attention to our present politics is intellectual suicide and I warn any sane person away from it.

That goes for the media as well—when they start trying to get our attention by saying ‘ten stories that have nothing to do with Trump’, you know they’ve long ago lost any sense of perspective. This is America, not the fucking Trump Show. Besides, what’s worse: an insane president, or a significant proportion of voters insane enough to elect him? We have the media to blame for both.

But which media did the most damage—the mainstream media, with its venal fascination with Trump’s idiotic rallies—or the alt-right media, with its delusional conspiracies and Russian Twitter-bots? That’s a tough call. Both doubled-down on their HRC-bashing (with a little help from Comey at the FBI)—one supposes because she was the only candidate with both a career-record and a coherent policy-agenda. Both failed to represent Trump as pure psycho liar and con man. It’s a tough call—we’d be our own worst enemy—if we didn’t have an actual enemy, in Putin.

Monday, March 20, 2017                                        6:21 PM

Angela Merkel gave him the well-deserved fish-eye—the Iraqi leader nervously tried to joke with the guy—Britain, as one voice, said he was patently ridiculous—are we embarrassed yet? Or does making America ‘great’ again include reverting to our condescending attitude toward every other country—which renders his buffoonery a moot issue?

So, let’s see, who do we not care about now? Well, there’s women, there’s poor people, immigrants, refugees, Muslims, minorities, students, old people, sick people, scientists, judges, journalists, artists, environmentalists, Democrats, and anyone who isn’t legally an American citizen, no matter where they live. Oh, and Trump supporters—let’s not forget how he wants to shaft them, too.

As fast as journalists, congressional committees, and intelligence agencies can put the lie to Trump’s tweets, he tweets out new re-hashings of those lies—if he wasn’t in the White House, we’d all be highly amused by now. As it is, unfortunately, we don’t know whether to impeach him for treason, impeach him for lying, or impeach him for insanity. Trump’s tactics abide—send a tidal wave of bullshit out into the media and let the adults scramble to align it (or not) with reality—meanwhile, who knows what evil nonsense is going on behind closed doors.

It’s very effective—as long as the GOP keeps its devil’s bargain with him—allowing his madness as long as he supports their vampire-like legislation. Should they ever awaken from their ethical coma, perhaps something could be done—but they haven’t finished using him yet.

Pack of Dogs   (2017Mar17)


Friday, March 17, 2017                                            8:51 AM

I can’t say enough bad things about the Trump administration, or the Republicans who collaborate with him. I could simply describe what they’ve been doing, or, thankfully, what they’ve been trying to do (judges have, so far, held back his most traitorous executive orders). It makes my blood run cold.

And the evil goes so deep—first there’s Trump and his coterie—a ranker bunch of troglodytes is hard to imagine—but then there’s the Republican Congress as well, quietly doing even worse, more long-lasting damage to this country. Then there’s the barrage of hypocritical distractions—like Trump’s ‘Obama tapped me’ claim, or his wishful thinking about the media being unreliable. Then there’s the gutting of the State Department’s career lifers—the institutional memory of government—and the firings of Federal D.A.s—including the one who was investigating Trump. And the rolling-back of Obama’s last six months of legislation—for no reason other than it being Obama’s.

The perfect storm of a popular criminal winning popularity, the media’s lobotomy over HRC’s fitness to serve, and the extreme partisanship of the GOP, making them willing to go along with Trump’s mendacity—all of this puts our country in the hands of the worst bunch of cronies imaginable. One of these assholes actually used the word ‘compassionate’ when talking about cutting the ‘Meals on Wheels’ program.

I don’t think we can wait for grounds for impeachment—we need a national referendum on our confidence in Trump as head of state—followed by a special election. Otherwise, we stand on ceremony while this pack of dogs chews up America’s best furniture.

And that’s the trouble, isn’t it? You and I—we’re capable of feeling shame, capable of feeling a sense of responsibility, unable to see ourselves as better than our neighbor, unable to ignore ethics. What a disadvantage that puts as at! We’re like an old-fashioned guy, who’s too much a gentleman to strike a lady, facing off against a deranged bitch with a razor. We need to climb on our high horse, to strike down this monster with all the justifiable outrage of good Americans.

All that’s needed is a consensus that Trump is beyond the pale, that he is a mistake we made—we don’t need to wait politely for four years—we need to act. I call for a national referendum and a vote of no confidence in this pig masquerading as our leader. Or we can wait until they’ve done all the damage they can—and spend the next twenty years struggling to get back to where we were three months ago.


Robot Doom   (2017Mar16)

Thursday, March 16, 2017                                                3:59 PM

20170306XD-BabySoxMardi Gras, Pi Day, St Paddy’s, Easter… do you get the feeling that people are desperate for a party by the time winter finally starts to end? Yet here we sit, between two snowstorms—snowstorms that didn’t bother us all through January or February. But, hey—power’s back up, no harm, no foul—and who wants the year to go by without a little snow, anyway, right?

Lovely day today, however—sun shining, snow glaring—warm inside and quiet. Got some music I’m working on posting—can’t be too good or I would have done it already. The crossword was pretty easy for a Thursday. I’ve already watched two whole movies today—I can’t watch any more or I’ll get movie-theater-headache.

I could try reading, but that won’t help the headache situation any. Sure could use some new pics from the grandbaby—what a cutey-muffin. She makes me smile. And Jessy says her first tooth is just peeking through—soon she’ll be smiling back.


Well, shall we talk about the horror-show in our nation’s capital? I don’t know, they change the details, but there’s a sameness to all of this foolishness. They try to lie—the media calls them on it—they call the media dishonest—respected people side with the media—they move on to new lies. It’s frustrating and tiring—but I don’t see them getting much more out of it than we do.

I’m tickled by all the yahoos that say, “He’s elected, get over it”. Like their man, Trump, these people don’t seem to get it—being elected is just the very first thing you do. It is not an achievement—it is permission to achieve, or to fail, for four years. We’ve barely begun his first year and already grandma’s Medicare is on the chopping block—how does that create jobs, again? And about those jobs…are we waiting for a bill to outlaw robots? Because there won’t be any great job market until we put our technology into reverse.

Anyone who can look ahead and extrapolate what’s next can see that jobs are going to decrease, inexorably, down to none, sooner or later. The real issue is not creating jobs—it’s figuring out an economy without labor—how do we distribute wealth when no one works for a living—because no one needs to, because no one can.


You need to give those people money—otherwise the businesses won’t have any customers. Plus, having millions of unemployed, angry people wandering around—that’s going to cause problems—bad enough they have nothing to keep them busy—they’re also hungry. That is why Socialism is so attractive—Capitalism is based on the assumption that everybody works—it doesn’t function if computers and AI and robots do all the work.

I know it’s—what do you call that?—disruptive, yeah, disruptive. I know it’s hard to wrap your head around. But it’s one of those ‘Sherlock Holmes’ things—once you’ve eliminated every other possibility, whatever’s left, however improbable, must be the solution.

Let’s look at the history of books. The first books were written, and copied, by hand—there were very few books. Then the printing press came along—suddenly, there were lots of books—and no room full of copyists was required. So they were out of a job—they had to find something else to do. Then computers came along, and typesetters were out of a job—they had to find something else to do. Then the internet came along and all publishers and printers were out of a job—they had to find something else to do. But what? An entire industry disappeared—where are those people supposed to find work? And that’s just one industry—it’s not alone.

You can tell yourself that ‘there will always be jobs’—but that is not guaranteed. It is, in fact, unlikely. In spite of its effect on other businesses, the people who invent new computers, AI, and robots are working day and night trying to make better ones. They just invented a machine that picks lettuce, right in the field, cleans it, wraps it, and puts them in a box. How many farmhands just lost their livelihood—hundreds of thousands, maybe? And what’s left? Maybe three jobs, running and fixing the machines. But a lettuce-picker is never going to get hired to maintain the robots—so they don’t have a shot at even those three jobs.

Trouble isn’t just coming—it’s already here. Unemployment remains a problem—but no business is shouting for more manpower—they’re fine—which means we’re screwed, especially if we just sold our souls to the bank to get sheepskins. Might I suggest a degree in computer science?


Another Break With Ethical Tradition   (2017Mar15)


Wednesday, March 15, 2017                                            3:32 PM

The Ides of March are upon us. And how fitting, when here in the present our would-be empress was character-assassinated, leaving the throne to a pack of criminals. And how paper-thin their pretense at public service—a quick bill to allow coal-waste dumping in local waterways, as an appetizer for removing 24 million from health insurance—and gutting the EPA (something even that old crook, Nixon, saw the point of enacting).

In what way are these shameless epicureans serving the public good? In what world are we not being sold out to the moneyed interests? And does wanting a ‘change’ in Washington mean wanting more protection for the big corporations and less concern for the average citizen—along with a heaping helping of incompetence and malfeasance? How is it that legitimate leadership has never before required so many PR people to be expert liars?

I saw a few minutes of FOX News today—they were clawing at Rachel Maddow’s reputation for revealing some information about Trump’s tax returns—claiming that making a big deal about them was liberal hysteria. No discussion (that I heard) addressed the fact that he is the only modern president to hide that information during the campaign—and continue to hide it, even after taking office. Neither did I hear anyone question why that is. But, boy, did they have fun ragging on Rachel.

Not that we should expect much different from a guy who won’t even put his assets in a blind trust for the duration of his term—another break with ethical tradition. Listen, my dad used to put me in charge when he was on vacation, too—it didn’t mean it wasn’t his business anymore. Ironically, while Trump has become the world’s most famous liar, he gets very emotional about how we should trust him to always do the right thing—I’d like to see him do one right thing.

An objective observer might remark on how ‘bigly’ the Trump camp jumps on any error, real or imagined, from anyone outside their circle—yet they minimize any errors of their own as if the rules don’t really apply when talking about such important poohbahs as Trump. But hypocrisy is a big word—and remember—‘nobody knew how complicated’ it would be to be president. How much more complicated would it become if he were to attempt to be a good president? Please. Let’s be realistic.

Ending the EPA is such a disastrous wish that many people are reassuring themselves by thinking, ‘oh, Trump’s too incompetent to make it happen’. My concern is merely the fact that he wants to. There was a famous fire in NYC’s Triangle Building a century ago—many women were killed due to the fact that the owner chained the exit-doors shut. The outrage over that mass immolation caused a few labor reforms. But here we are, one hundred years later, and Trump wants to chain the safety-doors to the entire country.

In what universe is this pig making a successful pretense of leadership?


Even If Millions Die   (2017Mar14)


Tuesday, March 14, 2017                                        9:11 AM

Blizzard today—trying to make up for a virtually snow-less winter—everything’s shut down—we cross our fingers that the electricity stays on. They named the storm ‘Stella!’, mostly so everyone could do a bad Marlon Brando imitation, I think.

The SCOTUS nominee is being heard today—the Dems have found a case where he ruled a man was legally fired after he deserted his broke-down truck in sub-zero weather. This sort of warm-blooded-humans-vs.-cold-blooded-cash dichotomy seems to be the real dividing line in politics today.

Bernie Sanders’ socialistic leanings are the one side of it—recognizing the dysfunctional aspects of Capitalism and having a desire to make government more humane and supportive. The Right wants money to remain money, should mountains of corpses pile up or not. Of course, they can’t be that blunt—so they go with ‘small government’—meaning a government that stands by and watches while business owners eat their fill of human misery.

And it isn’t their cruelty that disturbs me—it’s the mindless inefficiency of allowing millions to sink into difficulties—difficulties that will become a public expense, eventually—instead of implementing a significantly smaller ‘preventative’ public expense, up front. That’s the thing with the Right—they bitch about spending money on people, about ‘caretaker’ government—but they never address the costs, going forward, of neglecting those people.

The Right has taken education and health care and made them profit centers—and dysfunctional. College graduates start their careers as indentured servants to the banks—two centuries ago, you had to commit a crime to be treated that way. Still, it pairs nicely with all the for-profit-prisons that are reintroducing African-Americans to slavery. Surgeons and specialists hold out their hands for money, like maître de’s who keep out the riff-raff. To the Right, life, liberty, and learning are commodities to be paid for, or withheld. Inefficient. Short-sighted. And, yes, cold-fucking-blooded.


No wonder Trump is their idol—the most thoughtless, uncaring, authoritarian pig they could find. And don’t be fooled into gleeful celebration that Putin is now criticizing Trump—Putin wanted him in office because of the disruption he would inevitably create—now that he’s there, Putin is free to pile on with the naysayers—it even makes him look less complicit—so don’t be fooled.

But there is a strange beauty to the Right’s agenda—politicians who convince their voters that government is a bad thing—genius! Rich people who convince the middle class that the poor are the problem—inspired! Children of immigrants, in a nation of immigrants, that want to spend billions on a wall—to keep out the immigrants—incredible!

The Democrats, as uninspiring as they may be, are the only party that makes sense for a non-millionaire, or anyone who works for a living. That the Republicans can still make a pretense of representing the Silent Majority is indicative of our muddled journalism and our lack of education. The CBO estimates that 24 million people will lose health insurance under TrumpCare, but the GOP are rushing it through anyway—yeah, they’re on your side alright.

And with all the stumbling and bumbling in DC, the stock market still thrives—those people know what most voters do not—that the GOP is good for business, and will always be good for business, even if millions die.


Knowledge is Three-Dimensional   (2017Mar13)


Monday, March 13, 2017                                        11:16 AM

Cheese und crackers, can I write a suicidally depressing blog-post. But never fear, dear reader, I wouldn’t ask you to read that last one—not everything I write deserves posting. Let me try again—let’s see if I can be a little less direct, a little less my quintessential self.

Weather? Well, it’s cold as a witch’s tit, and weather is the death of conversation, so no joy there. Politics? Please, don’t get me started—neither one of us will enjoy that. The day of the week? Do you really want another smug joke about the Monday blues, the Monday blahs, the…oh, forget it.

I put myself back on anti-depressants yesterday—but I messed up and just took a full dose—you’re supposed to ramp up slowly, but you know how my memory doesn’t work. I spent the whole night in the crapper and my tummy still hurts. But, rocky start notwithstanding, I’m now safely back inside the drug bubble—protected from the flashes of rage and frustration, the obsessive behavior, the sleepless nights.

It’s always struck me as funny that the one thing anti-depressants can’t cure is depression. I’ve never stopped being depressed on these things, have you? No, anti-depressants modify your chemical response to depression—they don’t change the thoughts in your head—just the way that your body reacts to them.

Young people don’t usually make much of the connection between their feelings and the effects of those feelings on the body—or the effect of the body’s health on their feelings. Maybe that’s because the hormonal turbulences of young people easily overshadow that resonance—maybe that’s why I’m just starting to notice it, now that my hormones have gone ‘deep background’. For all we know, young people feel the oncoming rainstorm in their joints, too—but their hormones are shouting so loudly they can’t hear it.

I’m reading a story that posits the existence of ancient civilizations with technologies we’ve never learned. I thought about it. When the discovery was made, about electro-magnetic inductance and about EM radiation having a spectrum, from microwaves to radio waves to visible light to infra-red heat, et al., we shouted ‘Eureka!’ and decided that we had plumbed the mysteries of electricity. But what if there’s more to it—what if we ran with EM radiation, and in doing so ignored another basic principle of electricity that goes unknown and unnoticed today?

It’s a valid question: how much of our science is the development of physical concepts we discovered, or figured out, and excited us enough to overlook some other basic concept? What if our standard idea of EM radiation, as perpendicular waves of electricity and magnetism, is actually missing another pair that fit in diagonally—say, unicorn power and ESP, or something? After all, dark matter and dark energy are references to things that we can’t see or sense, thing we can only deduce through corollaries—is it any less likely that there are a few phenomena in physics that we can see, but have not yet deduced the meaning of?

If you’d asked me about this question a few years ago, I’d have been dismissive—but my opinion of human intelligence has taken a nose-dive of late and now, if there’s a question of ‘can we be that blind?’, I’m leaning always towards ‘yes’.

And, really, could electricity be more mysterious? Even after we figured out the basics—the Edison stuff—we still had waiting to be discovered: resistors (materials which change in a current), super-conductors (materials which transfer current without any loss of strength due to resistance), and solar panels (materials which convert sunlight into current). Think about it—Edison invented the electric lightbulb prior to our discovery that light itself was electricity (well, electromagnetic radiation at a certain frequency, if you insist on being technical).

Some discoveries, in short, are brand new ideas no one ever conceived of or guessed at—but some discoveries are of a deeper understanding of the already known. Galileo built the first telescope—but Newton was the first to figure out the optics of it—to explain why a telescope works. In reaching that deeper understanding, Newton was also inspired to invent the reflecting telescope—a smaller but more efficient use of magnification optics than the straight spyglass type.

In summary, there is always more to learn, to discover—but there’s always more to learn about what we already know, as well. Knowledge is three-dimensional.


I Haven’t Given Up   (2017Mar11)


Saturday, March 11, 2017                                        1:40 PM

I started out as an exceptionally intelligent person—but disease and CNS damage made me kinda stupid. I have trouble remember things or maintaining a line of reasoning for more than a few steps. I don’t argue with people anymore—I just assume that they understand things better than I do and defer to their judgement.

With one exception—I’m still smarter than conservative trolls online—these bastards log on and post their truly ugly foolishness, thinking they’re tweaking the beards of the intelligentsia—you can almost hear the ‘hyuk hyuk’ at the end—like Lenny in “Of Mice and Men”, crushing a mouse.

Well, technically, it’s not that I’m ‘smarter’—it’s just that the average Trump supporter is celebrating the dawn of the age of the idiot—their time has finally come, and they proudly display their ignorance as if ‘freedom of speech’ had magic dust in it. Then, doubling down, these dull blades take offense at being called stupid while they’re trumpeting their stupidity to the whole world—but I don’t let that bother me—tit for tat, bub. If they don’t want to be called stupid, they shouldn’t work so hard to prove it.

It’s ironic that these ‘tough guys’ who are so eager to let the poor starve, or die of treatable illness, have such delicate sensibilities when you call them out (‘let them eat cake—but don’t you dare hurt my wittle feelings’)—but if you want to make the world a darker place, strap in, because you’re going to hear from me, and you’re not going to like it.

We tell ourselves we’re living in a grown-up world but, every now and then, that ‘persistence of the high-school hallway’ bleeds through—and we find ourselves back in the world where might is right and ‘normal’ is dictated (and beat up the weirdo, for fun). We humans are contradictory beasts, knowing right from wrong, but not necessarily bound by that knowledge—they call it free will—I call it ‘people are assholes, sometimes’.

Does that sound bitter? I don’t see it that way. I think I’ve confronted the worst humanity has to offer and I have decided not to simply damn us all as hopelessly lost, but to characterize us, instead, as complex and contradictory. I think that’s pretty optimistic, really—given the evidence. In so many ways, this wonderful, modern world is just a few bad days away from a return to the Dark Ages. A lot of the conventions I’d like to think were rock solid, if I’m honest with myself, are relatively new and superficial—hell, some of them are younger than I am.

I was born two months after Rosa Parks was arrested. When I was a child, comics joked about women holding ordinary jobs, like policeman or construction worker. When I was a teenager, gays were still being beaten to death in public without the police getting upset about it. The world I’ve grown up in has gotten more and more enlightened with every passing year.

It is inexpressibly saddening for me to watch the whole thing start to swing backwards now. As our outer lives grow closer to science fiction, our inner lives revert to primitivism—in space we build laboratories—back on Earth, we kill each other while the true villains loll about in untold wealth.

Computers were a surprise, huh? I can still remember when I was the only person in the building who knew how to use one. Now that they’re everywhere, do we use them to streamline our government or make our lives more humane? No, we tweet. How disappointing.

Or how about the environment? I was in junior high school when Rachel Carson and Ralph Nader started to wake us to the fact that our burgeoning technology had consequences—that everything has a price. That was 1969—the year of the first Earth Day. Almost a half century later, the fat cats are still yelling that it’s not true—and that we can’t afford to save the earth, even if it were. Fifty years they’ve been saying that immediate economic disaster is worse than looming existential disaster—any sensible person would have used that time to prepare.

And I get it. We’re not saints, we’re not geniuses. We get through the day the best we can—and if the world is going to hell, what are we supposed to do about it? What can one man do? But still, as a group, humanity is embarrassingly stupid and suicidal. We all have our excuses—but we can’t deny the results, either. So, no, I haven’t given up on us yet—but only for lack of options.


Abortion   (2017Mar11)


Saturday, March 11, 2017                                                 12:06 PM

Abortion has existed since ancient times. Earlier civilizations used certain herbs to terminate pregnancy, even before surgical methods were known. And abortion is still practiced today, even in countries where it is illegal. Like so many things, abortion happens whether the law allows it or not.

To imagine that making abortion illegal or unavailable will end abortion is the kind of simplistic thinking that causes more trouble than the issue itself. Shuttering Planned Parenthood, or even legally banning abortion, won’t stop abortions—it will only make them more dangerous and increase criminality.

Please note that I’m not advocating abortion—as a man, it’s really not something I’m prepared to have an opinion about. I’m advocating that we recognize human nature. Outlawing abortion won’t stop abortion. Defunding Planned Parenthood won’t stop abortion. Such things will only make it more dangerous and less controlled.

Don’t get me wrong—defunding Planned Parenthood will do something—it will take important health care away from women. If that’s what you want to do, then close it down—but it won’t stop abortion.

The history of our Prohibition era could teach us a lot, if we were willing to learn from history. Things like drugs, sex, and rock n’ roll happen, with or without legality—the only difference is that illegality creates an underworld, a criminal subculture that undermines local and federal government and increases violence.

Look at our DEA—initially an army against drug-abuse, now nothing more than a central focus of corruption and payoffs. Meanwhile drug abuse grows by leaps and bounds.

The thing these outlaw-crazy people miss is the fact that regulation is far more effective than a ban—it provides quality control, commercial control, age limits—hell, you can even collect taxes off it. And people don’t fight as hard against regulation as they do against deprivation. We have accepted this truth regarding alcohol, but for some reason we try to pretend that it doesn’t scale-up to everything else.

So you think abortion is a crime, an offense against God—whatever—I’m not going to try to change your opinion. I’m simply pointing out that abortion isn’t going anywhere—driving it underground actually ingrains it more deeply into our society, making it a cause instead of a mere service.

The stronger your sense of personal morality, the less sense it makes, to me, that you would want to take that personal choice away from someone else. If you think you have the right to decide what’s right and what’s wrong, how can you possibly believe that other people don’t have the same right?

If you want to disapprove of people who choose to get an abortion—that’s fine—you have your own morality—now you only have to learn to let them have theirs. Take that away from them and it’s only a matter of time before someone decides to take yours. This stuff works both ways, Einstein.


Tough Tomatoes   (2017Mar10)

Friday, March 10, 2017

I’ve been wondering lately how we ever got to a point where our public servants serve themselves and still get people to vote for them. But then I remembered history.

The Native Americans didn’t get slaughtered overnight, you know—there was over a century of people giving lip service to humanitarian relations with the Natives, while others argued for White Supremacy, or Christianity uber alles, or whatever other rationale presented itself—or they simply snuck out at night and ambushed innocent Natives, without bothering with excuses.

Likewise, slavery was debated and fought over, long before the Civil War. And, as with the Native American genocide, good Americans sat around their breakfast tables, saying, ‘tsk, tsk, it sure is a conundrum’—and went out and voted for public servants that wanted to rid the land of Indians, or keep our Africans safely in chains.

So our entire history is one of good people, sitting around and discussing politics like a spectator sport instead of a battle between good and evil. Yet a battle between good and evil it has always been—and continues to be in the present. We vote our fears more than our beliefs. We are more easily frightened than inspired. And, sadly, we get the government we deserve.

Our present government is on the ironically-tragic side of being a joke. But we elected them. We even heard them say incredibly disqualifying things, then voted for them. They go on TV every day and embarrass themselves trying to call a pimple a beauty mark, or call a lie an alternative truth—and we support these con artists.

Yesterday, a profoundly stupid man named Scott Pruitt, recently appointed head of the EPA, remarked that he didn’t believe in chemistry, optics, or physics in general—more specifically, he questioned the greenhouse effect of CO2 in the atmosphere—an unquestionable fact. He was appointed to head the EPA because he could be counted on to either be this stupid, or pretend to be this stupid—and, in that context, he’s doing a bang-up job.

Americans have gotten into the bad habit of questioning the veracity of things they don’t like—and politicians, seeing this as a new tool, are leading the charge. Had they had the advantage of being raised by my father, they would be more familiar with the motto of normal people who don’t like an unpleasant fact: “Tough tomatoes”.

And so I offer this sentiment to all you fat bastards who don’t like the fact that the way you stay filthy rich is by destroying our society, our environment, and given sufficient time, even yourselves—you stupid brats. Tough tomatoes. Stop yer crying (and lying and pollution) and let’s all move on to a future where the inconveniences of science and truth are dealt with, rather than squirmed around.

How childish is it for Paul Ryan to respond to a question about what’s not in the TrumpCare bill by saying, “Read the bill”—when he knows that there’s nothing in the bill to answer the question either? That evil rascal needs a foot up his ass. But that’s the trouble—we voted for these criminals—and now that they are safely in office, they get to tell us, ‘tough tomatoes’—not because they’re right, but just because they can.

If any American ever votes for a Republican, ever again, it will be proof positive that we are all idiots and deserve to be inveigled by these fuckers for however long this country can last, without real leadership.

Health Careless   (2017Mar10)


Friday, March 10, 2017                                                     12:42 PM

Snow covers every branch and twig, mounding on the evergreen shrubs and making the birds take two tries to sit on a branch, without a tiny avalanche. One timid chickadee outside our kitchen window almost cleared an entire tree, trying to find a safe perch. The cardinals are all fluffed up like nerf balls. I hope everyone got a snow day—or at least a delay—it isn’t as though this winter set records for snow days. And there are still a few days until spring.

Okay—this new health care plan is opposed by the Democrats, as you’d expect—but it’s also opposed by the AMA, health care providers, and conservatives (who think it not harsh enough). Meanwhile, all indications are that the only beneficiaries of the changes will be the wealthy.

Wealthy people used to be happy to be rich—they didn’t feel the need to keep everyone else in hell just for emphasis. But now, I guess, wealth no longer represents mere comfort and security—it means power—and what good is power if you don’t abuse it? How will they know we’re unhappy in our need, if they don’t do everything they can to make us suffer?

But even wealthy people have occasional need of an ER now and then—why would they turn all the ERs back into overcrowded homeless shelters? Don’t they even care about their own quality of life? Next thing you know, they’ll be claiming that they can’t afford to cart away corpses—they’d rather step over the dead bodies than waste money on meat wagons. Does becoming wealthy damage the brain, erasing the concept of ‘community’ from any mind that owns an expensive car? Or is it just that hiring enough people starts to make you believe you own them?

These bastards are pretty quick with the tough love when they have no conception of tough. Spoiled little pricks with attitudes have seemingly found a way to get people to vote against their own self-interests—how mysterious. Is Paul Ryan’s shit-eating grin that effective? It was only a few months ago that we hand-picked these monsters—and now we’re all up in arms over how criminally incompetent they are—how does that happen?

20140203XD-RoundDHouse(58thBDay) (1)

POEM:    Belonging   (2017Mar09)


Thursday, March 09, 2017                                                1:49 PM



The piano growls at me from the corner

The wind blows memories against the window-glass

The ache circles within me, an adversary in waiting

The air stings my skin with the numbness

The time flails my thoughts, world encompassed

Within my tiny brain of electrified glop

The computer invites me to crawl inside

The speakers hug my ears—the monitor titillates

Then the music ends.

Alone in a room with the atmosphere battering

At the house as the only sound—eerie and lonesome

I can’t type you away.


By Xper Dunn





Obama – The Final President   (2017Mar08)


Wednesday, March 08, 2017                                            12:06 PM

In 1941, when our country was attacked, FDR told us the only thing we had to fear was fear itself. After the war, Truman assured us that the buck stopped with him. Eisenhower, a former general who knew about such things, warned us, in his farewell address, that a military-industrial complex was commodifying violence and leaching our strength during peace-time. JFK inspired us to reach for the stars. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act. Nixon, while a crook, at least ended our military involvement in Viet Nam. Ford pardoned Nixon, but in his defense, he always pointed out that accepting a pardon was an admission of guilt. Carter helped us begin to accept responsibility for our effects on the environment and the planet. Reagan won the Cold War. Bush-41 freed Kuwait. Clinton defended abortion, saying it should be kept ‘safe, legal, and rare’, and signed the Family Medical Leave Act, and Don’t Ask-Don’t Tell—the first acceptance of gays in the military. Bush-43 enacted No Child Left Behind—an attempt to democratize our educational system. Obama recovered from Bush’s ‘great recession’, passed the ACA, and killed Bin Laden.


As you can see, every modern president has made a significant contribution to our nation and to the world. By being responsible, semi-woke leaders of the free world, they all used judgement, insight, and patience to achieve things that few people have the character and determination to achieve. And those presidents had educated, responsible legislators to work with.


So join me in having a good cry—those days are gone. America has been broken into tiny pieces by a bunch of selfish, ignorant hacks and poohbahs. The world laughs at us, as their ‘Igors’ go on TV and parse ‘alternate truths’ and unfounded libel against the former president. They hand us to the Russians for thirty pieces of silver. They rush to pass laws that allow coal waste to be dumped in our drinking water—but dither over ongoing lead-poisoning in Flint that is destroying the nervous systems of a whole generation of kids.


Photo by Eric Draper, White House.

These evil cynics and hypocritical truth-twisters don’t need to be resisted—they need to be lined up against a wall. They call themselves conservatives—but they only conserve their bank accounts. They call themselves people of faith—but the only faith they have is yours (if you’re fool enough to give it to them). They confuse governing with poker—where lying with a straight face is an integral part of the game. They have no ethics. They have no honesty. They have no shame.


(Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

And me? I was proud to be an American. There was a lot to be proud of. And we were just about to go on to even greater things. My dreams are shattered. My heart is broken. I see only darkness ahead. Where did this sudden lobotomy come from? Can we really blame the Russians for voting in this clown? And, if so, can we really expect his cronies to uncover the truth in these investigations? And even if we nuked Russia tomorrow, would that rid us of the yahoos that shouted ‘Trump that bitch’? I don’t think so. The explosion of racism in this country of late is all on us—election notwithstanding, we have people being violently xenophobic at every opportunity.

Stupid people have decided that they have a voice. And they do—it’s the voice of stupidity—and I have a message for them in return—shut your fucking mouth you stupid fucking asshole. I want America to go back to when stupid people had at least enough sense to respect intelligence, even when they didn’t understand it. And for all those of you who’ve gone all the way past crazy, to science-denial—here’s a special message for ya: Go eat a bag of dicks. I want my fucking country back.

Pete— and Political Depression   (2017Mar07)

20170306XD-BabySoxTuesday, March 07, 2017                                        7:38 PM

It was fun playing with Pete yesterday, as always—we did Sixties covers and an improv at the end—shorter than usual, but I’ve been somewhat fatigued lately—this post also has two solo videos I’ve been trying to upload for a few days.

I enjoyed the annual arrival of March 4th on Saturday (You know… ‘What’s the only day of the year that’s like a military command?’) The worse a joke is, the better I like it. It was also brother Russell’s birthday the previous day, March 3rd—had he lived, he would have been 59 last Friday.

Lots of politics in the news—but I’ve decided it’s all a big conspiracy—the politicians, the media, the wealthy, the corporations—they do their little school play and we all applaud, like they’re responsible grown-ups instead of empty suits with staring fish-eyes. As Al Pacino once said, “I’d like to take a blowtorch to this place.” Now that they have us arguing amongst ourselves over what’s true, we’re doomed—they’re even dropping any pretense of ethics, they have us so locked up—it’s pitiful.

So I’m taking the night off from playing their bull-pucky games. I tell you what really gets me—the pretension to respectability, so transparent, so far removed from actual respectability. All we expect of them is that they can speak intelligently about the job they’re supposed to be doing—and they can’t even get that much together.

But pose? Man, can these monkeys pose. I suppose, given the majority of them having no ethics, it’s just as well they don’t know much. But enough about politicians—competent people are hard put to throw themselves in with mongrels and such saintly folk are thus eternally doomed to labor in the minority—like Warren, Franken, and Sanders. My blogging, about what that gang of thugs in Washington is doing, is even less effective.

Well, there goes my plan to write something cheery. Dammit.

What can I say? I’m not a chipper guy. And I really am feeling tired lately—it’s not helping. I think I have political depression—they’ve changed our democracy into a reality show/game show/talk show—and I get depressed remembering the good old days—when people still had working heads and democracy was a serious responsibility. Remember? It was just four years ago.

Anyway, thanks as always to Pete, for being such a good sport about playing music with me—and for being such a good friend.



Who Needs The Russians?   (2017Mar07)


Tuesday, March 07, 2017                                        9:03 AM

Trump’s ‘wiretap’ lie is an attempt to convince us that serious planning happens inside Trump Tower (and by extension, in the Oval)—but tweeting it without consulting anyone else on his staff proves the exact opposite.

I’m so deeply ashamed of my country and my countrymen right now—especially those who voted for the vile vanity who struts golf-courses as our head of state. That offense-against-decency-in-chief is backed by a gang of soulless, conscienceless Republicans who began the new administration by sending him a vital bill—allowing our waterways to be used to dump coal waste. That was their top priority—and a bill speaks a thousand words.

Now they want to rescind the legislation that offers health care to the underserved—sending them flooding back into the country’s ERs. These elitist vermin cackle to each other as they dismantle everything good they can find, while promoting whatever unethical, money-grubbing fat-cat sends a lobbyist to blow them.

Who needs the Russians? We have hate-filled voters and hypocritical politicians destroying the American Dream as fast as they can—denying religious freedom, denying First Amendment rights, denying science, and making some sort of new art-form out of bullshitting—as if blatant untruths are okay, as long as your TV spokespeople are sleazy enough to keep all their obstinacy-balls in the air until the break.

As if using the Citizens United ruling to pretend wealth spent equals free speech were not enough, they promote and support outlets of untruthfulness, called ‘alternate news sites’ (‘alternate’ is the new euphemism for ‘dishonest’) which they can then feed their own propaganda and hear it regurgitated back to them as ‘news’. Then they call the New York Times dishonest. And people fall for this blatant bullshit. It’s so humiliating—and the irony is that most of the voters and pols who are dissolving America’s greatness before our eyes are people who believe that American Greatness is something they were born to—not something that requires effort or engagement. Of course they bridle at the label ‘deplorable’—it’s perfectly apt—and they have to look it up.

For all his talk about making America great, Trump has patently never bothered to learn what America truly is or, more pertinent to a president, how America is supposed to work. But this is where Republicans can offer pointers on making up rules as they go along—they know how America is supposed to work—and they stay up late figuring out how to gerrymander their personal gain past the will of the people—or, failing that, using psy-ops-like disinformation to convince the voters to support their own persecution.

I suppose we should be grateful that these monsters are too selfish to work together as a team—they’re doing plenty enough damage just flailing around as independent self-servers.

Death To Republicans   (2017Mar05)


Sunday, March 05, 2017                                          1:59 PM

The Republicans are dead meat. Sure, we were distracted by Trump and the Russians, but Trump is a Republican, and Putin works for the Republicans—so really, this is all about the Republicans. Trump’s ‘who-gives-a-shit’ antics allowed him to garner popularity votes—but he can’t sign anything important unless the Republicans put it on his desk. And the Republicans’ attacks on Obama’s last six months of legislation sound more like a list of crimes against humanity than any kind of political agenda.

While we stare aghast at their straw-man, Trump, we overlook their willingness to allow his cronyism, his lying, his criminality, his conflicts of interest—and his ties to Russia—to go unchallenged. Why? Because that idiot will sign whatever bill they give him—he’s a free ride for their darkest fantasies of corporate overrule and climate denial. Trump is a travesty—but these cynical goons in Congress know exactly what they’re doing. They know the difference between right and wrong—and they wouldn’t squirm on TV so much or be so reluctant to give a straight answer if they didn’t know they were guilty.

We even give their defensive guilt-trips cute names like ‘push-back’ and ‘spin’—but only the guilty need to modulate the truth. They mask their reluctance to confront their constituents by claiming town-hall attendees are too rambunctious—or even that those people are being bussed in by political activists—one of their many easily-disproven lies. How do they convince themselves these lies will be effective?

Well, they have a market for their lies—a support-group who strain upward, beaks agape, like baby birds waiting for any scrap of delusional thinking the alt-right drops down their gullets. I think this is the first time the ‘militia’ demographic has gotten a voice in American affairs—up until now everyone readily recognized them as treasonous malcontents with psychological issues.

Trump’s responses to his faux-pas have been, “I didn’t know.”; “This was started before me.”; and “Nobody knew it was so complicated.” Trump is an ignorant buffoon—but the Republicans stand behind him, to a man—supporting ignorance even greater than their own, knowingly, willingly, for cynical partisan gain.

I say no one should ever vote for a Republican, ever again, for any elected office. A Republican, from all current evidence, is a traitor to his country and to its citizens—these gerrymandering, scandal-grinding, science-denying, disinformation-addicted sons-of-bitches have got to learn that Americans will only take so much shit.

These are just a few of the horrendous bills the Republicans have introduced:

  1. HR 861 Terminate the Environmental Protection Agency
  2. HR 610 Vouchers for Public Education
  3. HR 899 Terminate the Department of Education
  4. HJR 69 Repeal Rule Protecting Wildlife
  5. HR 370 Repeal Affordable Care Act
  6. HR 354 Defund Planned Parenthood
  7. HR 785 National Right to Work (this one ends unions)
  8. HR 83 Mobilizing Against Sanctuary Cities Bill
  9. HR 147 Criminalizing Abortion (“Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act”)
  10. HR 808 Sanctions against Iran

If your senators and reps aren’t saved in your phone yet, text your zip code to 520-200-2223. You’ll get a text back with everyone’s contact info. It gives you Federal and State.

Call your House Representative and ask them not only to vote ‘No’, but to speak out against their party and its administration.


When Crazy Gets Too One-Sided   (2017Mar05)

Sunday, March 05, 2017                                          11:36 AM

20160826XD-NativeAmericansProtestPipeline_02Trump supporters are too foolish to realize they’re being lied to. Trump himself is an ignoramus, a fool, and a crazy person—and not in a cute way, but as in a raving lunatic with a gun. The Republicans are hypocrites who, in their own quiet way, are just as toxic—more so, when we consider that Trump just flails about, while these jackasses are serious and considered about their demonic agenda. Lies are being told. Laws are being broken—or repealed, if they’re really good ones. Hate is being touted as national security. And the media is reporting on the tweets of a madman, just because he lives in the White House.

The majority of this country didn’t vote. Of those who did, the majority voted for someone else. Some people see this as chaos, but I see it as a kind of pressure cooker—somethings gonna blow, sooner or later. It’s just too crazy an environment not to pop out a few maniacs—and who knows what they’ll do in their hysteria? Who knows what I’ll do? Thank god I’m disabled—I can’t be tempted to anything ambitious, like insurrection.

But there are plenty of healthy, sane people out there—and they’re about to call your ‘crazy’, and raise you a ‘furious’—in the end, Trump won’t be impeached—he’ll be torn apart on Penn Ave by a howling mob. You can’t treat people this way for very long without getting a reaction out of them. They were too lazy to vote for HRC, but that was when Obama was in office and all was right with the world. Now they’re about to lose their schools, their doctors, and their trade partners—and an amoral scumbag tweets at them in the night. Hey Trump, I got bad news for you—the only constant is change.

I’ve got a new fad for the nation—every election, we vote for anyone or anything that isn’t a Republican. From now on, we think of Republican as a synonym for Russian. It doesn’t matter how much you hate the other guy or gal—if they’re not Republican, they get our vote. How’s that for matching your crazy with our own? Evil, greedy traitors don’t get a free ride anymore, not now that we’ve seen your true colors.

Kamps for Kids   (2017Mar04)

Saturday, March 04, 2017                                        7:08 PM

Americans are crazy. We started our country by revolution—and then decided we’d keep our guns, just in case, forever. If you think about it, to this day, if a state threatens to secede everyone takes it very seriously. Imagine—an over-two-century old union of more than fifty sovereignties—and if a single one of those states said, ‘we’re gonna secede’ no one would laugh. Even with the Civil War’s failed secession as an object lesson in how destructive that is—Americans still like to think of our country as a work-in-progress. States still like to think they are stand-alone entities.

It’s a natural mistake—look at Brexit—a union even greater than our own—and one of its strongest members sees no better move on the geopolitical chessboard than petulant isolation. The European Union may outweigh the United States, but they don’t have our experience—guys, you’re only supposed to threaten to do something as stupid as quitting.

I shouldn’t brag, though. With our new ‘alternate reality’ schism, I’m sure the citizens of several states would grab their guns and stand at the barricades, if Bannon told them to. And even without declaring civil war, the gun-related death-toll in America outnumbers the body counts of several military hot-spots around the globe. We love our guns and if you don’t like it, I’ll plug ya.

Which makes it kind of strange that military service is such a rarity in the USA. A very small percentage of our young people go through military service as a rite of passage. Enlistment and training were an assumed stage in any man’s life, in any country, for many centuries—a man who didn’t serve in the military was no man. This tradition stretches back to the coming-of-age rituals of tribal societies. And we have broken that thread.

Don’t get me wrong—I was turning eighteen the same year that draft registration was abolished—I was one of the first people to find out what it was like to live life without any contact with military training. And while the Viet Nam war was winding down, it was not yet over—so being left out was a good thing, as far as I was concerned.

And I’m not advocating military service as part of a healthy upbringing either. But the practical results concern me. With military training confined to the innocent bystanders of drive-by shootings—and that being pretty poor training by any standard—one wonders how well-prepared we are to deal with countries where military service is still the rule.

Not because they have bigger armies or anything—just because their young people have the harder side of life rubbed in their faces as a part of their life—and while that is extremely unpleasant, it is also very eye-opening. I think a lot of young Americans are walking around with droopy eyelids—and they are in danger of becoming caught unawares by others—not just on land or sea, but in science, in business, and in trade. And from what I hear, a few of them could use the exercise, also.

It’s natural for a sixty-one-year-old to go on about how kids today need this or that—and military training may be the worst possible choice. But it seems to me that America doesn’t need a large army—not today, anyway. So, enlisting a bunch of young people in a government program of a less-exclusively-military nature might be a workable idea—it would fit in with a well-planned infrastructure renovation program and have the kids leave with some job skills, too—kind of like FDR’s CCC program.

I don’t know. I do know that coming-of-age rituals are beneficial—they help confront young people with self-discipline and the rigors of adulthood—and prepare them to be serious members of the community. There are too many places for people to gather online—and not enough places where people literally gather—it’s easy for young people to just drift off and get lost. With some sort of civil service program, we could at least reduce those who drift off to those who really want to.

When we make it hard for young people to find jobs, we send a lot of good people down into cellars with bongs, where they wait for the world to come find them. What a waste of all that youthful energy and enthusiasm. This country’s aversion to anything socialist in nature will be its undoing in the end—some things are better achieved through socialist programs—that’s just a fact. But there’s always that handful of people who’ve found a way to make a buck out of the lack of a program—and they shout bloody murder about the reds taking over, as soon as you go for their rice bowls.

Of course, if anyone listened to me, I’d be eternally damned. The reality of such a program would be corrupt, inefficient, possibly even predatory, by the time the ‘serious’ people got hold of it. But if it was done nicely, people would actually benefit from it—and so would the country as a whole. Still, we have the Soviet Union as the ultimate example of a good idea that became a genocidal crime against humanity—so perhaps I should just shut up about camps for kids.

‘Bugsy’ Trump   (2017Mar04)


Saturday, March 04, 2017                                        10:16 AM

Today one of Facebook’s featured news-stories concerned a Trump tweet that accused President Obama of wiretapping Trump Tower. This is the sort of thing he used to confuse us with—we’d be so busy laughing at how ludicrous he was we’d overlook the delusional nature of such statements. But I’m not laughing at his antics anymore—and the idea of a president who tweets his paranoia is no longer amusing.

To begin with—if such a thing were true, it would be as serious as a heart attack—it would require investigations and charges and who knows what else—and it would certainly, at some point, need a shred of proof. So, any sane normal person would not make the bald accusation, alone—no, they would say, ‘I have this proof here that something bad was done.’ We wouldn’t even need to ask for proof—a sane person would recognize that such a libel requires it—if for no other reason than as a starting point for an investigation.

But Trump seems to be free-associating, as he did when he accused Obama of ‘founding ISIS’ (just breathe—count slowly to ten…) after Obama had correctly pointed out that Trump’s anti-Muslim rhetoric was promoting the extremists’ agenda. Trump’s just telling stories to his base—stories he knows they’ll enjoy—they don’t need to be true, or have proof. Trump saying it is the only proof his base needs, now that we live in a bifurcated reality.

Then there’s the question of what exactly Obama would get out of ‘bugging Trump Tower’. Normally, one might wish to know a rival’s plans and strategy—but Trump doesn’t have any—we’re still waiting on his Health Care plan, his Jobs plan, his Infrastructure plan, his Education plan, etc. In short, there is no intelligence to intercept inside of Trump Tower. His tactics are petulance and disinformation to promote ignorance—it’s no great secret. There’s nothing to bug.

Let face it—it’s a false accusation. False accusations fly out of Trump’s mouth whenever he’s threatened—and they are always a mirror-image of the threat against him. Hil calls him ‘unfit’ and suddenly, he’s calling her ‘unfit’. She calls him a puppet of Putin, he—well, you know the clip. When the media exposes his lies, he calls them liars. When generals criticize him, he says the generals are incompetent. If this were a comic book, he’d be the evil villain using a mirror-shield to defend against the superhero’s laser-gun.

And we notice. At some point, we realize—this is a confession—this is Trump deciding he’s been tagged ‘it’ and he has to run up to someone else and tag them, or he’ll lose. So we wonder—is this Trump worrying that a Russian-interference investigation is starting to look inevitable? Or is it something more childish—say, a reaction to the Obamas’ enthusiastic reception on their return from vacation?

We continue to be puzzled by the media’s willingness to broadcast Trump’s tweets as news—he has followers who have volunteered to receive his personal disinformation—why can’t we leave it at that? They got fed up with Kellyanne Conway’s inability to resemble truth or reason—why shouldn’t they conclude the same about our president? Does the dignity of the office actually legitimize bullshit? I hope not.

So, I offer a new nickname for our pumpkin-in-chief: ‘Bugsy’—a fitting moniker, once used by a gang of criminals for a criminal even those psychos thought had a screw loose. When will the GOP get tired of ‘winning’ this country into an early grave and cut themselves loose from this deplorable Donald? Hey, Bugsy—take it from me—you’re going to make history. And, yes, that is another comparison of you to Hitler.